I've wanted to read Barbara Kingsolver's work for some time and this audiobook practically fell in my lap, so I thought I'd give it a try. It turns out that this was a good one to start with as it was her first novel. In this story, a plucky young thing from Kentucky named Marietta Greer leaves home for the first time in her '55 VW bug and heads west with no particular destination in mind but a wish for adventure. Adventure is what she gets as the forces of fate begin to shape her new future. When her car breaks down in Taylorville, Illinois she changes her name "Taylor". When she stops at a diner near a Cherokee Reservation, she becomes the inadvertent caregiver for a seemingly mute Native American toddler who she names "Turtle". Taylor winds up in Tucson, Arizona with Turtle in tow when both tires go flat. What starts out as a temporary stop ends up being where Taylor and Turtle put down roots. Although Arizona is completely foreign to Taylor, she learns to love it there and embraces the new responsibilities that have been thrust upon her. This book is often funny, filled with interesting characters, and is generally life-affirming. For me, this book serves as a necessary reminder that every person on the face of this great earth has their own unique journey.
Recommended by Cheryl Finnan